We had dinner at Ana Mandara this evening, and took advantage of the DAt oromotion to acquaint ourselves with the place. Our experience overall was very favorable and we will go back. It is pricey and the savings from the DAT were significant.
They had a special menu for the DAT with two or three choices for each course. Most, but not all, of the selections were on the regular menu. I'll give the prices of those that were.
First course was a choice among Crispy Lobster Ravioli with Mango and Coconut Sauce ($12), Vietnamese Steamed Crepe with Chicken & Shrimp ($7), and Organic Baby Greens with Hearts of Palm, Ginger Vinaigrette ($5). We opted for the Ravioli and crepe. The ravioli consisted of 5 deep fried well stuffed raviolis in a delicious sweet spicy mango sauce with a soft undertone of coconut. I wanted to lick the plate.
The crepes were also 5 well stuffed and flavorful clear rice flour dumplings served with crispy fried onions. The texture was wonderful. But for me the raviolis were definitely the better choice.
The second course offered a choice among Seared Mekong Basa, with Scallion Flowers, Spicy Lemon Sauce ($22), Dungeness Crab and Scallops with Cellophane Noodles and Julienne Vegetables, and Traditional Spicy Caramelized Chicken with Lemon Grass and Ginger. The chicken consisted of small bite sized pieces of white meat chicken that had been carmelized and served on a bed of snow peas that had been cut to look like little fish. The dish was not at all spicy despite its name, but was good. The Crab and scallop dish looked kind of like pad thai noodles sprinkled with ground peanuts and all, but had a totally different taste. The vegetables were very crisp and the dish really came together well. The vegetables were onions, celery, bean sprouts, and shredded carrots.
For dessert the choice was between Coconut & Mango Tropical Mousse Cake and Petit Pot de Creme au Vietnamese Coffee. The pot de creme was excellent. It had a very rich coffee flavor. The mouusse cake was just ok. The presentation of both was very good with a topping of whipped cream and a different cookie sticking out of each one. The buttert coconut cookie with the cake was really good.
The wine list was very good. I took advantage of a page in front named Last Call. It was a selection of wines, that they only had a few of left, and were offering at reduced prices to make room in their cellar. We had a 1/2 bottle of Rollins 1998 Pernand Vergelesses ($20) which I thought was pretty good.
There was one major glitch in the service, which until that point had been very good. We were never offered coffee or tea or after dinner drinks. In fact while we were half way through the dessert course and were discussing whether or not to have coffee kerplunk here came the check dropped unceremoniously on the table.
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